in an interview recently i heard janet jackson refer to missy elliott as ‘jack.’ she said it was because missy was a ‘jack of all trades.’ if you’re a jack (or jaquee), you know this is may be a blessing and perhaps a struggle. it might seem to be a fight for focus. but being able to do lots of things or having an interest in them, doesn’t mean you’re off track. it means you love a lot of things. not sure why, but it bothered me earlier this year when someone said “we’re looking for someone more nuanced.” synonyms to nuance are: delicate, suggestion, implication, subtlety. why did i let this bother me? i thought of missy in my reflection. the thing is, she questioned why janet called her jack but never denied who janet said she was.
most times people who are ‘jacks/jaquee’s’ are versatile. they’re flexible yet still authentic because curiosity fuels them. that’s part of their allure. they fit most places and are welcomed there. as i reflected on that moment of “we’re looking for…” it confirmed that i am many things. and pretty good at them. there’s some nuance about me but i’m not subtle nor hard to figure out. i’m authentic and quite direct. it was him who was a bit too focused; too linear. “i thought you’d say this…” was his reply to two of my answers. if you’re looking for a puppet, i ain’t him. i take direction well but trust also let’s people do things they’re way.
let people find what they’re looking for. i believe that man did. but what bothered me at first, reminded me of the blessing in “to thine own self be true.” growth teaches you to be more confident in who you are. we’re all arriving; allow it. i am.
a boy who loves – j. darius greene